Journal of Soils and Sediments

, Volume 10, Issue 2, pp 162–171 | Cite as

Freely dissolved PCDD/F concentrations in the Frierfjord, Norway: comparing equilibrium passive sampling with “active” water sampling




Equilibrium passive samplers consisting of 55-µm polyoxymethylene (POM) and 170-µm polydimethylsiloxane were tested for the analysis of polychlorinated dibenzodioxin/furan (PCDD/F) in the pore water and overlying water of the Frierfjord, a bay in southern Norway. This fjord is heavily polluted with PCDD/Fs due to emissions from a former Mg smelter.

Results and Discussion

Field exposures of both equilibrium passive sampler types yielded similar results for freely dissolved PCDD/F concentrations (CW,free) in the overlying water. In addition, the passive sampling data deviated less than an order of magnitude from CW,free obtained with conventional “active” sampling through pumping/filtration over glass fiber filters and polyurethane foam. A similar comparison was done for the pore water, where POM passive samplers also proved to yield freely dissolved pore water concentrations (CPW,free) that deviated less than an order of magnitude from earlier published values measured by direct pore water extraction. The data were also used to derive sediment–water activity ratios, which indicate the diffusive flux direction. High sediment-to-water activity ratios (median value of 160 for 17 congeners) indicated a strong diffusion gradient between the sediment pore water and the overlying water, probably due to deposition of particle-bound PCDD/Fs in combination with low sedimentation rates.


PCDD/F Frierfjord Equilibrium passive sampling Free concentrations 



Amorphous organic carbon


Freely dissolved pore water concentration


Freely dissolved fjord water concentration


Dissolved organic carbon


Glass fiber filters


Solid–water distribution ratio


Polychlorinated dibenzodioxin/furan


Polyoxymethylene (passive sampler)


Polydimethylsiloxane (passive sampler)


Polyurethane foam


Total organic carbon


World Health Organization toxic equivalents

Supplementary material

11368_2009_152_MOESM1_ESM.doc (148 kb)
ESM1(DOC 151 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gerard Cornelissen
    • 1
    • 3
  • Dag Broman
    • 3
  • Kristoffer Næs
    • 2
  1. 1.Norwegian Geotechnical Institute (NGI)OsloNorway
  2. 2.Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA)OsloNorway
  3. 3.Department of Applied Environmental Sciences (ITM)Stockholm UniversityStockholmSweden

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